Shanghai, 17 June 2019 - Data in PwC's Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2019-2023 shows that the cinema segment in China is still rising at a very rapid pace. By 2020, China is predicted to become the world's biggest cinema market. China's box office revenue rose by 9.1 percent in 2018, and total income was US$9.9 billion. As a result, strong growth at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.4 percent is projected to continue over the next five years, with sales hitting US$15.5bn by 2023.
Box-office growth and growing ticket prices have benefited from the growth in China's cinema industry. In terms of admissions and cinema visits, China was the leading global market in 2015 and has continued to expand since then. China had the tallest screens in the world in 2016. At a CAGR of 4.65 percent and projected to cross 75, 406 by 2023, the number of screens is expected to increase. The disparity between China and the U.S. in ticket prices, however, is still relatively high. The Outlook forecasts that the national average in 2018 was US$5.1 per ticket, on track to hit US$5.7 by 2023, while the U.S. average price is projected to increase from US$9.3 in 2018 to US$9.6 in 2023.
The competitiveness of domestic films has increased dramatically in terms of content. The "rule 80/20" is at work. More than 700 films were screened domestically from 2018 to May 2019, of which -45 films raked in more than RMB500mn each. The films seen accounted for 72 percent of overall box office revenue during this period. 27 of the 45 films shown were made domestically and accounted for 45 percent of overall box office profits, while just 27 percent accounted for 18 foreign films. The Outlook data forecasts that a large number of movies with similar nationalistic themes will prove successful in box office sales at the end of 2019 when China celebrates its 70th National Day, and domestic films will gain more publicity than ever.
"The competitiveness of Chinese film has enhanced, and the new generation of directors are becoming the backbone of the market. ‘Content is the king' again - quality content is the core driver of ticket sales. The celebrity effect is in decline, while the word of mouth effect is on the rise."Chinese film's competitiveness has improved, and the new generation of directors is becoming the market's backbone. Again,' content is the king' - the key driver of ticket sales is quality content. The celebrity effect is in decline, while the word of mouth effect is on the rise.
In several ways, the Internet is shaping the film industry. 84.5 percent of the sales of movie tickets in China were made online in 2018. The rivalry between cinemas, meanwhile, continues to escalate. This is triggering an industry reshuffling of cinema operators, based on the number of cinemas that closed and opened in 2017 and 2018. In 2018, the number of cinema closures in fourth-tier cities was much greater than in 2017, with the number of newly opened cinemas in China decreasing in contrast. The intense rivalry between cinemas is reflected in this reality.
"The internet is still bringing great benefits to the domestic cinema market," said Jane Kong, PwC China Entertainment and Media Partner. Transparency in box office figures has been enhanced by the popularity of online ticket sales. In ticketing platforms, social media. and video websites, online marketing networks were concentrated, not forgetting the impact and value of short video platforms to increase film marketing for the cinema sector.